On the 20th anniversary of The Sopranos, I thought I’d bless your timelines with some exciting news about the prequel.
It’s been confirmed the prequel, The Many Saints of Newark, will focus on the relationship between Christopher’s father – aka Dickie – and Tony.
Now, as all Soprano fans will know, Christopher was Tony’s protégé in the hugely successful drama series, a relationship which is to be mirrored in the prequel – but this time between Dickie and a young Tony.
Alessandro Nivola, who will play Dickie in The Many Saints of Newark, has revealed he will be ‘the central character’ in the show and his relationship with Tony is to be explored in great detail.
Speaking to Variety, Nivola said the show’s creator David Chase confirmed the relationship ‘is an important one in the film’ and so will be portrayed as such.
Dickie, as he’s mentioned throughout the ‘Sopranos’ series, was an important figure in Tony’s life.
He was a real mentor figure, because Tony’s dad was is in prison a lot and Dickie didn’t have any children until later in his life until his early 40s, and so he treated Tony like a surrogate son.
Played by the late James Gandolfini, Tony was the de facto boss of the DiMeo crime family – one of the most powerful fictional criminal organisations in America.
The Many Saints of Newark will explore the origins of the iconic mobster as he is raised by his tough father Johnny Soprano and nagging mother Livia.
Set in 1967, when the Newark riots were rife, the film will deal with the tensions between the African-American and Italian communities at the time.
In an interview with Deadline, Chase – who is writing the upcoming film – revealed he was against the movie for a long time, but came round because he wanted to explore Newark in more depth.
I was interested in Newark and life in Newark at that time. I used to go to down there every Saturday night for dinner with my grandparents. But the thing that interested me most was Tony’s boyhood. I was interested in exploring that.
The movie will deal with the tensions between the blacks and whites at the time, and Tony Soprano will be part of this, but as a kid.
I was against [the movie] for a long time and I’m still very worried about it, but I became interested in Newark, where my parents came from, and where the riots took place…
I started thinking about those events and organised crime, and I just got interested in mixing those two elements.
The Sopranos originally aired between 1999 and 2007 and was a multi-award-winning series, picking up multiple Golden Globes and Primetime Emmy Awards.
With the film set to enter production this year, studios New Line and Warner Bros. are currently casting.
Hopefully we won’t have to wait too long to see Tony and our favourite mobsters grace our screens once more.
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A Broadcast Journalism Masters graduate who went on to achieve an NCTJ level 3 Diploma in Journalism, Lucy has done stints at ITV, BBC Inside Out and Key 103. While working as a journalist for UNILAD, Lucy has reported on breaking news stories while also writing features about mental health, cervical screening awareness, and Little Mix (who she is unapologetically obsessed with).